ALBANY, N.Y. — Albany Police Department officials said on Thursday that they had received a report from a state official about an alleged incident at the Executive Mansion involving Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and a female aide that may have risen “to the level of a crime.”
Steve Smith, a spokesman for the Albany police, said that the department had not received a formal complaint from the woman, who has not been identified, but that it had reached out to a representative for her.
This does not mean, Mr. Smith said, that the department has opened a criminal investigation, but it has offered its services to the alleged victim, “as we would do with any other report or incident.”
The police said the department received the referral Wednesday night after the publication of an article in The Times Union of Albany that detailed accusations leveled by an unidentified aide to the governor who accused Mr. Cuomo of groping her at the governor’s mansion, where he lives.
Mr. Smith said the call had come from the New York State Police. But the governor’s acting counsel, Beth Garvey, said on Thursday that she had called the police on Wednesday night and reported the allegations, after a lawyer for the female aide told the governor’s office that the aide did not want to file a report.
“As a matter of state policy, when allegations of physical contact are made, the agency informs the complainant that they should contact their local police department,” Ms. Garvey said in a statement. “If they decline, the agency has an obligation to reach out themselves and inform the department of the allegation.”
“In this case, the person is represented by counsel and when counsel confirmed the client did not want to make a report, the state notified the police department and gave them the attorney’s information,” Ms. Garvey added.
While the police department’s actions are part of standard procedure, the situation underscored the potential criminal exposure Mr. Cuomo faces if the aide decided to pursue charges for unwanted touching.
The aide, who is younger than Mr. Cuomo, was summoned to the governor’s private residence on the second floor to assist him with a technical issue when Mr. Cuomo reached under her blouse and began touching her, The Times Union said.
On Wednesday, the governor denied any wrongdoing.
A female supervisor in the office became aware of the aide’s allegation on March 3 when Mr. Cuomo, following multiple allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior, gave a televised apology in which he denied touching anyone inappropriately. The newspaper reported that the supervisor noticed the aide become emotional during the governor’s address and that the aide subsequently told the supervisor about her encounter with the governor.
The aide had not filed a formal complaint with the governor’s office, the newspaper reported, but the allegation was forwarded this week to the state attorney general, which is overseeing an investigation into sexual harassment allegations made against Mr. Cuomo.